Happy New Year everyone! I’m not big on the New Year as a holiday, but I like the idea of a marker in time where you are hopeful about a fresh start and taking a moment to assess priorities, to see where you are in terms of goals and aspirations-where you fell short and where you’ve maintained and grown. This New Year’s we decided to hang out at home and keep it quiet since we had a flurry of guests the week before. I exercised some restraint in my drinking so I could get up and go running in Central Park in the morning. I proudly layered up and got at it. That shock of cold feels good when you challenge it. I’d like to get some pictures of my winter runs up on my Instagram to try to inspire good habits and hold myself accountable to keep going.
This bowl of goodness is one of the dishes I prefer most these days. It has all the spices and chilis, beans, seeds and herbs to keep me coming back. The deep red makes this dish a stunner too. The meatballs are a combination of beets and chickpeas seasoned with an earthy cumin that emphasizes the nuttiness of the chickpeas. They’re spiced with a jalapeño pepper for heat, ground and whole coriander seeds–drawing inspiration from falafel, and a hit of Spanish smoked paprika. I drizzled it with tahini and cashew cream and served it with mushrooms I had left over from another version of meatballs I’ve been working on and finally nailed. I kept dipping into the bowl and eating these beetballs by the spoonful before I even got them into the oven. The pasta is rotini made out of lentils and packed with nutritional value. It holds up exactly the same as regular semolina pasta and it’s the best alternative I’ve found if you’re going for a non-homemade, gluten-free pasta. Tolerant makes these and it’s the best brand I’ve found so far (not sponsored, just an honest recommendation).
This year I plan to continue to use food as nourishment and to keep digging into the idea of wellness in all of its various aspects. The job is never done and so the journey will always be a learning process, an adventure and an expansion. I’m thankful to have you guys along for the ride!
BEETROOT MEATBALL BOWL W/ TAHINI & CASHEW CREAM (GF+V)
- 1 1/2 cups chickpeas (soaked overnigh and drained) or 1 can of chickpeas, drained
- 2 tbsp ground cumin
- 1 tbsp coriander
- 1/4 tsp coriander seeds (optional)
- 2 tbsp Spanish smoked paprika
- 1 jalapeño pepper, seeded and finely chopped
- 3 to 4 medium sized beetroots, rinsed and peeled
- 1/2 cup(ish) cilantro, finely chopped
- 1/3 cup rolled oats
- 1 flax egg*
- tahini to serve
- 1/2 cup mushrooms, sliced
- 2 cups your choice of pasta
*For the flax egg combine 1 tablespoon of ground flax seeds (flax meal with 2 1/2 tablespoons of water and let sit for five minutes. Use the mixture in place of an egg.
Preheat oven to 350F.
Grate beetroot in a food processor or high-speed blender. Remove and move to bowl. Pulse chickpeas in food processor or high-speed blender until they form a rough paste. In a large bowl, mix together grated beetroot, chickpeas, cumin, coriander, paprika, jalapeño, cilantro, oats, and flax egg. Season well and mix until combined.
Form into 12 small balls, each one should be about 2-3 tablespoons full.
Bake for 25-30 minutes.
Meanwhile, bring 3-4 cups of water to a boil. Add the pasta. Drain and put into a large bowl. Add the mushrooms.